Concern over rise in targeted ads for teenagers prompting new social media laws | #socialmedia


A “worrying” rise in teenagers being hit with targeted advertising has prompted the federal government to draft new laws, cracking down on the harvesting of their data online.
Under the legislation, an Online Privacy Code would compel social media companies to verify a user’s age and obtain parental consent for those aged under 16.

Attorney-General Michaelia Cash said companies will have a responsibility to ensure children aren’t improperly targeted with harmful material.

An Online Privacy Code would compel social media companies to verify a user’s age. (AP)

“Why is it young girls aged 12, 13 and 14 are being targeted online with advertisements for diet pills?” Senator Cash told 9News.

“When they’re being actively targeted and in some cases being told you need to look a certain way, you need to be a certain weight, that is just inappropriate.” 

The Coalition is looking to increase financial penalties for companies like Facebook, Google and TikTok, if they repeatedly breach the laws. 

Companies will have a responsibility to ensure children aren’t improperly targeted with harmful material. (AP)

The code also aims to ensure children and parents have consented to their data being obtained, and users can opt out if they don’t want their information collected for marketing purposes.

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“This needs to be in the best interests of the child, not the profits of the social media company,” Senator Cash declared. 



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